Another shot fired in battle over GOP's future

CPAC announces a conservative running against Florida Gov. Charlie Crist in a Senate primary as its keynote speaker

Published November 12, 2009 9:01PM (EST)

The conservative movement has a new star in its fight against establishment Republicans it deems too liberal. Marco Rubio, a former speaker of the Florida House, who's running against Gov. Charlie Crist for the GOP's nomination in a Senate race, has taken up the spotlight that briefly went to Doug Hoffman, the unlikely third-party star who lost a close race in a Congressional election in New York earlier this month. And now Rubio's getting an extra boost from a big name on the right.

The Conservative Political Action Conference has just announced that Rubio will be the keynote speaker at its next annual conference, to be held early next year. It's a sign of how much backing Rubio's getting in his race against Crist, and also something that will undoubtedly help his campaign by giving him increased visibility, even national coverage, not to mention donations that are likely to follow as a result.

Rubio is a low-profile choice for the keynote. This year, the speaker was Rush Limbaugh.

By Alex Koppelman

Alex Koppelman is a staff writer for Salon.

MORE FROM Alex Koppelman

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2010 Elections Charlie Crist Cpac Florida Senate Race Republican Party War Room